Rochester woman charged in laptop theft told police she thought she was thwarting terrorists
By BEA LEWIS Union Leader Correspondent
WOLFEBORO — A Rochester woman charged with theft, accused of fraudulently buying a $1,299 laptop computer on a local businessman’s account, took part in an elaborate scheme to cover up her crime, according to police.
Authorities investigated Jennifer Wozmak, 52, of 150 Rochester Hill Road, Apt. 3, after a Wolfeboro electrician reported on March 26 that someone had hacked his company bank account and made a fraudulent purchase.
After tracking the purchase of the Apple laptop to Wozmak, police said she told them she had been contacted by a company that was going to pay her to pick up packages, re-label them and ship them.
“Jennifer justified her actions by stating she thought she was dealing with terrorists and was intercepting their merchandise,” according to the affidavit in support of an arrest warrant signed by Wolfeboro Sgt. Scott Moore.
The business owner told police he noticed a pending charge to the Apple online store which he had not made. When he tried to dispute the charge, he was told the silver 13-inch MacBook Pro had already been shipped, police said.
Using the tracking number, the business owner learned the package had been picked up at a United Parcel Service facility in Laconia on March 23. He spoke to a person at UPS, who advised him that Wozmak had picked up and signed for the package and had presented a company letterhead, according to court documents.
The clerk thought the package most likely was a laptop and was suspicious, police said, so she had obtained the driver’s license of the man sitting in a black sedan Wozmak had arrived in and also wrote down the license plate number, police said.
When police traced the plate they learned the 2008 Chevy Aveo was jointly registered to Joseph Jalbert and Wozmak, the affadavit said.
On April 4, police searched the couple’s Rochester apartment and Wozmak revealed that Jalbert had gone to Portsmouth to ship the package via FedEx that day.
When Jalbert returned, police asked for the shipping receipt and a Portsmouth police officer retrieved the package and placed it in the evidence room after putting his initials on the tape securing the unopened package.
Wolfeboro police brought the package to the businessman whose account had been hacked and when he opened it, he found seven magazines inside the box and no laptop, police said.
Police searched Wozmak’s apartment again on June 12. Wozmak admitted she had sold the computer on Ebay for $1,100 and showed the transaction details to investigators, police said.
She remains free on $1,000 personal recognizance bail and is scheduled to appear in Ossipee Circuit Court Sept. 12.
The charge is a Class B misdemeanor potentially punishable by up to a $1,200 fine upon conviction.